RUH Scientist wins Innovation Gold Medal

Principal Clinical Scientist Darren Hart who has led or supported several highly successful innovation projects at the Royal United Hospitals Bath Foundation Trust, is this year’s recipient of the prestigious Innovation Gold Medal by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM).

The Gold Medal is awarded to those who have consistently contributed at an outstanding level to the advancement of healthcare innovation.

Darren supported the development of the RUH’s Back to Basics Virtual Reality (VR) videos, which are part of the RUH Patient Safety Programme. Developed by a small project team and funded by a grant from Health Education England, the VR videos are a different and memorable way to refresh people’s knowledge of the RUH’s patient safety priorities.

With a cast of RUH staff volunteer actors and actresses, four overlapping patient stories have been recorded using multiple 360° cameras. Staff can virtually sit at the end of a patient’s bed or accompany colleagues to see how preventable patient safety issues can arise and be avoided.

Darren said: “I am delighted to be recognised as an innovator within the NHS. New ways to help address the healthcare challenges around us need to be explored, nurtured and celebrated, and I have been very fortunate to work alongside many brilliant patients, colleagues and mentors who have helped to do this. The RUH’s Back to Basics VR training is such an example; we all know how important patient safety is, so having the opportunity to bring the training to life in this way will really benefit the people we care for and we’ve also received fantastic feedback from our staff.”